As I was making this bread it's a balmy 82 degrees outside, definitely unseasonable for early October. Not that I'm complaining. The weather's gonna do what the weather's gonna do. And I'm actually happy it's warm, you see there are still a bunch of tomatoes on the vine that need ripening. But I chose to make an autumnal favorite for October's Sourdough Surprise because I saw my self curled up on the couch watching the leaves fall with a hot cup of tea and a sweet slice of cranberry walnut bread. And not just any ordinary cranberry walnut bread, but a sourdough cranberry walnut bread.
Actually it doesn't need to be cold outside to enjoy this bread. I ended up taking it to my sister's and she and her daughter and our other sister all enjoyed it after a long day of cleaning out her kitchen in preparation for her new one she's having put in (yes, I'm totally jealous).
I know that was a mouth full. Well, so is this bread! It's moist and chewy, spicy and crunchy and really lives up to it's name in the quick department. Best of all, it goes just as well with a cold glass of milk as it does with a hot cuppa. Now let me imagine enjoying it in MY new kitchen.
cranberry walnut bread (adapted from this recipe)
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup boiling water
4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup sourdough starter
1 & 1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat oven to 325 degrees and butter and flour a 5 by 9 inch bread pan. In a large bowl pour boiling water over cranberries. Add butter and stir until butter is melted. Stir in honey, brown sugar, beaten egg, vanilla and sourdough starter.
In another bowl whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Mix dry ingredients into wet just until combined. Fold in walnuts. Turn batter out into prepared bread pan. Bake for 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes, turn out of pan and continue cooling on a rack before slicing.